The Indianapolis Colts signed a number of undrafted free agents shortly after the draft began, and one such player was former Clemson safety Robert Smith. Just by the position he plays, Smith is a guy to keep an eye on this offseason and into training camp, as the Colts could use safety help, and Smith recently mentioned how thankful he is to have wound up in Indy.
"To be honest with you, I don't think I could have ended up in a better organization than the Colts," Smith told Aaron Brenner of The Post and Courier in Charleston, South Carolina. "If you would have asked me before the draft, did I think I'd be going to the Colts, I really thought it'd be a 10 percent chance. They were on my list, a team I knew was interested in me, but I didn't hear very much from them. Some, but not a lot.
"Once I got here, after a week, I knew I was in an environment that's used to winning," Smith continued. "I walk to the indoor practice facility, and I'm seeing all these championship banners from year to year to year to year. I realized I'm in the right place. God directed me here for a reason. I'm in a place that cares about winning, they know how to win, they know how to treat their players. There are 32 teams competing for the Super Bowl, but really, you look at the last 10 years, there's probably only five teams that day in and day out legitimately have a chance. I really feel like the Colts organization is one of those teams."
Smith added that it's especially telling that almost everybody is showing up at the voluntary offseason workouts, as it's clear that everybody wants to work together in an effort to be as good as they can be. He mentioned that his role is to make Chuck Pagano and the other coaches notice him, and that even after he leaves at 5 p.m. each day, he starts studying his playbook some more because "I want to say I did everything I could possibly do." He wants to have a reputation as a hard worker so that, even if things don't work out with the Colts, they'll have good things to say about him to other teams interested in the safety.
During his career at Clemson, Smith played in 53 games, making 26 starts and recording 182 tackles, six tackles for loss, a sack, two quarterback pressures, four picks, seven passes defensed, a forced fumble, and three fumble recoveries. He was an Honorable Mention All-ACC in 2014 and was a two-time ACC Academic Honor Roll member. The safety obviously wasn't drafted, but he was quickly signed by the Colts - a situation that he's very thankful for.
The Colts have a need at safety that, if Smith impresses, could earn him a roster spot. It seems like Mike Adams and Dwight Lowery are clearly the expected starters, and the Colts did draft a safety in Clayton Geathers and did re-sign Colt Anderson, but Smith could make an impact if he does well in the offseason, training camp, and preseason. He'll have to compete with guys like Dewey McDonald and Winston Guy, as well as Geathers and Anderson, but considering the team's need at the position they'll likely be watching for young players who have potential to continue to develop. Whether or not that is Robert Smith could be in large part up to him, and it's clear that he's very happy to be in Indianapolis with the Colts and is very impressed with the organization.